Luke 8:26-39, “And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee. And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils for a long time, and wore no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What I have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not. (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and with fetters; and he broke the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)
And Jesus asked him, saying, What is your name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him. And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep. And there was there a herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would permit them to enter into them. And he permitted them. Then went the devils out of the man and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the lake, and were choked. When they that fed them saw what was done, they fled, and went and told it in the city and in the country. Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.
They also which saw it told them by what means he that was possessed of the devils was healed. Then the whole multitude of the country of the Gadarenes round about besought him to depart from them; for they were taken with great fear: and he went up into the ship, and returned back again. Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, Return to thine own house, and show how great things God has done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had one for him.”
We are living in dark times. So many places in our world right now we see only the triumph of brokenness, ugliness, sadness, grief and evil. It has been 2000 years since your Son, Jesus Christ, walked the earth bringing the joyful message of healing and reconciliation with God, breaking through the darkness with His Eternal light and the forgiveness of sins. Remember us today, Father, who long to see your power manifested among us, who need to see that you still heal broken lives today, that you still intervene in complex circumstances and that you can still bring reconciliation and true change to hearts.
Thank you that you are still on the throne of Heaven and that you still hear the prayer of those with humble and contrite hearts who ask, like the tax collector in the Temple so long ago, “God, be merciful to me a sinner.” We ask this not because of any merits of our own, but because of the perfect, faultless merits of your Son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.